Monday, 6 July 2009

Wimbledon and the art of sponsorship

Yesterday i, like many millions across the world, sat watching the mens finals at Wimbledon. The game itself was far better than most imagined although at the end i noticed the weirdest thing.

Those with sharp eyes may also have noticed this, but having just lost the final, Roddick moved to his chair, sat down and held his face in his hands as you would expect a man whose dreams had just been shattered would do. However the very next thing he did was put his expensive looking watch on. He then got up and acknowledged the crowd, waving his watch wearing arm aloft. Now if i had just lost the final after over 4 hours of exhausting tennis the last thing i would think of would be to slip my watch on straight after the game. In fact i would not have brought the watch out to court with me, i probably would have left it in the locker.

The difference between Roddick and i, apart from the £430k he earned yesterday, is that i am not sponsored by a watch company. Roddick had to make sure that shots of me waving to the crowd had to include my sponsors watch. As the camera panned back to Federer who had changed ready for the presentation, he too had miraculously slipped his watch on ready for the coming photo opps.

This was an oh so subtle yet very clear reminder of the power of sponsorship in modern sport.

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